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Diary of a Mad Sportswriter: May 2008

Diary of a Mad Sportswriter

Stan Hudy is a sportswriter for The Saratogian and Community News. He covers high school and youth sports in the Saratoga County area as well as writing a weekly book review on sports books. He's not just a "stick and ball" sportswriter, he's willing to take on any sport as well as any subject.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Section II lax triple header

By STAN HUDY
The Saratogian
TROY -- Its been more than 2 1/2 months since the Schuylerville boys lacrosse team took the field for the first time as a varsity unit.
On Thursday afternoon all that time, effort and practices paid off as the Black Horses dismissed Greenwich-Cambridge, 10-4, in the Section II Class C semifinal at RPI's Ned Harkness turf lacrosse field.
The Black Horses dominated every category Thursday, leading the Witches in ground balls, 40-19, and shot attempts, 37-18. Witches goalie Matt Bartuck held the lone advantage, turning back 16 shots while Schuylerville stopper J.P. Gove was credited with four stops.
"They out-hustled us, outuplayed us the whole game," Greenwich coach Bob Sipperly said. "Greenwich-Cambridge played one of the worst games of the year in that category."
Schuylerville was led by Tony Casimano's four goals on the day along with Jake Zakrzewski and Colton Barber firing in two each. Dave Ferris and Sean Jason each tallied a goal for the Black Horses.
"This was a challenge, but a fun challenge," Tony Casimano said "This team is full of hard workers that want to come to lacrosse practice each day."
The control that Schuylerville showed in the semifinal wasn't by chance.
"You have to credit my volunteer assistant coach Jim Gilman, he put together a great game plan," Schuylerville coach Bill Battaglia said. "The last time we played they surprised us with a couple things. Me, I could have been a little over confident in that game too."
With Gilman's scouting report, the Black Horses executed their game plan to perfection.
"Our goalie, J.P. Gove is such a leader, he knows what to do on the field. On offense Dave Ferris and Colton Barber are a great 1-2 punch," Battaglia said. "Shane Larkin has been hurt, but plays so tough. Last year he was a tough kid, now he's a tough kid with skills."
Schuylerville advances to face No. 1 Johnstown 3 p.m. June 6 at RPI and the Black Horses have unfinished business.
"This was just like football, do it or go home," Casimano said. "We have a lot of winners on our team and the Section II final has been a target for us.
"We've lost in the boys soccer and football Section II finals," Casimano said. "We want to win, we want that sectional title, that's our common goal."
Sipperly reminded his players about their future, not to dwell on Thursday's outcome.
"Most of these players have two to three years left to play," Sipperly said. "Our future looks good. On another day we might beat them, not today. They did all the right things today.

SCHUYLERVILLE 10, GREENWICH 4
Greenwich-Cambridge (4)
Conor Dans (3 goals, O assists), Ryan McFee 1-0, Jordan Fortier 0-1.
Schuylerville (10)
Tony Casimano (4 goals, 0 assists), Jake Zakrzewski 2-0, Colton Barber 2-0, Dave Ferris 1-0, Sean Jason 1-0.
Greenwich 1 1 2 0 - 4
Schuylerville 2 3 3 2 - 10
Goalie saves: Greenwich -- Matt Bartuck, 16 saves. Schuylerville, J.P. Gove 4 saves.

Section II Class B semifinals
South Glens Falls 10, Glens Falls 5
TROY -- It took three attempts and an early season rout by a rival but a mature, in control South Glens Falls squad enacted its revenge when it counted the most, in the Section II Class B semifinal with a 10-5 win over Glens Falls at RPI.
The Indians routed the Bulldogs, 15-2, in their first meeting and the two squads battled into three overtimes with Glens Falls escaping with an 8-7 win.
On Thursday the South High defense withstood an early Indians attack in the first half and pushed Glens Falls to its limits in the second half, scoring five goals and advancing to the June 6 championship final.
"I'm glad we had that second game," South High coach Scott Comstock said. "They gained a trmendous amount of confidence. The guys knew they could beat them. If this is after the 15-2 game they may have a few doubts."
South High senior Chris Mach led the Bulldogs with four goals with Adam Barber adding two more. Chris Lee, Andrew Leege, Tim Howe and Anthony Delzotto each tallied a score.
"We all kept coming at them," mach said. "Everyone helped me with good assists and clears."
Glens Falls held a one-goal advantage five times, but South High found an answer each time.
In the second half the Indians became frustrated with their inability to score and it showed.
Glens Falls committed 10 penalties in the second half compared to Sout High's single infraction.
"We out worked and played smart," Comstock said. "I've got nice guys on my team, they're respectful and play the game with intelligence and control. That might have been part of it today."

SOUTH GLENS FALLS 10, GLENS FALLS 5
South Glens Falls (10)
Chris Mach (4 goals, 0 assists), Adam Barber 2-0, Chris Lee 1-1, Tim Howe 1-2, Anthony Delzotto 1-0, Andrew Leege 1-0, Bryan Baker 0-1.
Glens Falls (5)
Tim Graham (2 goals, 1 assist), Ian Saunders 1-0, Beau Knapp 1-1, Jared Woodell 1-0, Matt Mason 0-1.
South Glens Falls 2 3 2 3 - 10
Glens Falls 3 1 1 0 - 5
Goalie saves: South Glens Falls, Scott Morgan, 5. Glens Falls, Matt Besan, 13 saves.

Section II Class B semifinal
Burnt Hills 9, Scotia-Glenville 5
TROY - One of the smallest players on the Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake boys varsity lacrosse team came up the biggest as the Spartans overcame their own penalty woes in the first half and stormed back in the second half to a 9-5 Section II Class B semifinal victory over Scotia-Glenville.
Junior goalie, Collin Whiteford, turned back 18 shots in goal for the Spartans, advancing the sophomore program into the Class B semifinal in only its second year of varsity competition.
"The defense did an amazing job," Whiteford said. "They shredded No. 21 (Kevin Wentworth) with double teams and they really wanted to win."
The Tartans fired 40 shots on the Burnt Hills cage, keeping the second-year goaltender busy.
"I play better like that, when I don't get a break," Whiteford said. "I see the ball more clearly and the 'D' gave me a break."
Scotia-Glenville's biggest lead was by two goals, 4-2, in the second quarter before Burnt Hills went on a 6-1 scoring streak through the third quarter, establishing an 8-4 lead.
The Spartans were led by Mike Eddy and Alex Stewart with two goals and an assist each.
"This week I just wanted to emphasize what we did well," Burnt Hills coach Paul Fedoroff said. "I think we play the best scrappy game of any team in the section."
Burnt Hills will now face South Glens Falls June 6 at RPI in the Section II Class B final.

BURNT HILLS 9, SCOTIA GLENVILLE 5
Burnt Hills (9)
Mike Eddy (2 goals, 1 assist), Alex Stewart 2-1, Ian Schwan 1-1, Ryan Kissane 1-1, Cole Godfrey 1-0, Nucci Lauria 1-0, Matt Fittz 1-0.
Scotia-Glenville (5)
John Zabin 2-0, Jason Restina 1-2, Eric Landry 1-0, Matt Strenk 1-0, Kevin Wentworth 0-1.
Burnt Hills 2 1 5 1 - 9
Scotia-Glenville 2 2 0 1 - 5
Goalie saves: Burnt Hills, Collin Whiteford, 18 saves. Scotia-Glenville, 10, saves.
Sent from my BlackBerry® wireless device

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Shen, South High, Mechanicville tops in softball playoffs

SARATOGA SPRINGS – Membership has its privileges.
Three of the top six seeds in the 2008 Section II softball tournament all had perfect records and all six have first round byes as the tournament gets underway today at Adirondack Sports Complex in Queensbury and the Clifton Common softball complex in Clifton Park.

Shenendehowa (14-0) earned the top seed in Class AA, South Glens Falls (14-0) was No. 1 in Class A and Hoosic Valley (14-0) as the best in Class B. Mechanicville (12-1) was given a No. 1 seed over No. 2 Lake George (13-1) in Class CC, Duanesburg (16-1) was tops in Class C with Argyle (13-2) receiving a bye and the top spot in Class D.
Saratoga Springs (7-7) was given a No. 9 seed and will face No. 8 Schenectady (9-3) 4 p.m. today at the Adirondack Sports Complex. The winner will face Shenendehowa 5 p.m. Friday at Veeder Park in Colonie.

All the action in Class A gets underway on Friday where No. 3 Burnt Hills (8-6) takes on No. 6 Scotia-Glenville (8-6) 3 p.m. at the Adirondack Sports Complex. South High is off until the semifinals 4 p.m. June 3 at the Adirondack Sports Complex. The Bulldogs face the winner of Friday’s No. 4 Holy Names (19-60 vs. No. 5 Glens Falls (8-6) winner.

Schuylerville (10-3) was the top seed from Saratoga County in the Class B tournament at No. 4 and the Black Horses will face No. 13 Broadalbin-Perth (7-7) 4 p.m. at the Adirondack Sports Complex today. Saratoga Central Catholic (14-4) the No. 5 seed will face No. 12 Hudson (9-9) 3 p.m. today at Clifton Common. Those two winners will face-off 5 p.m. Friday at the Adirondack Sports Complex.

In Class CC No. 4 Greenwich (8-6) will take on No. 5 Corinth (8-6) 4 p.m. Thursday at the Adirondack Sports Complex with the winner advancing to the semifinals to face Mechanicville 3 p.m. June 2 at Clifton Common.

Waterford-Halfmoon (12-2) received a No. 3 seed and will face No. 6 Warrensburg (10-4) 3:30 p.m. Thursday at Veeder Park.

The Class AA, A, B and D championship finals will be played 5 p.m. June 6 at the Clifton Common with the Class C and CC title games scheduled for 3 p.m. June 4 at the Clifton Commons. The Class C-CC playoff game is set for June 6.

Section II softball tournament
Class AA
Wednesday, May 28
Preliminary games
No. 8 Schenectady (9-3) vs. No. 9 Saratoga (7-7) at Adirondack Sports Complex, 4 p.m.
No. 4 Queensbury (12-2) vs. No. 13 Shaker (6-6) at Adirondack Sports Complex, 4 p.m.
No. 5 Bethlehem (9-5) vs. No. 12 Guilderland (6-8) at Clifton Common, 3 p.m.
No. 6 Columbia (9-5) vs. No. 11 Amsterdam (8-4) at Adirondack Sports Complex, 4 p.m.
No. 7 Colonie (8-6) vs. No. 10 Catholic Central (9-3) at Clifton Common, 3 p.m.
Friday, May 30
Quarterfinals
No. 1 Shenendehowa (14-0) vs. Schenectady/Saratoga winner at Vedder Park, 5 p.m.
Queensbury/Shaker winner vs. Bethlehem/Guilderland winner at Vedder Park, 5 p.m.
No. 3 Troy (10-2) vs. Columbia/Amsterdam winner at Vedder Park, 5 p.m.
No. 2 Niskayuna (12-2) vs. Colonie/Catholic Central winner at Vedder Park, 5 p.m.
Tuesday, June 3
Semifinals
At Vedder Park, 3:30 p.m.
Friday, June 6
Championship game
At Clifton Common, 5 p.m.

Class A
Friday, May 30
Quarterfinals
No.4 Holy Names (19-6) vs. No. 5 Glens Falls (8-6) at Adirondack Sports Complex, 3 p.m.
No. 3 Burnt Hills (8-6) vs. No. 6 Scotia-Glenville (8-6) at Adirondack Sports Complex, 3 p.m.
Tuesday, June 3
Semifinals
No. 1 South High (14-0) vs. Holy Names/Glens Falls winner at Adirondack Sports Complex, 4 p.m.
No. 2 Lansingburgh (15-1) vs. Burnt Hills/Scotia winner at Adirondack Sports Complex, 4 p.m.
Friday, June 6
Championship game
At Clifton Common, 5 p.m.

Class B
Wednesday, May 28
Preliminary games
No. 8 Chatham (13-5) vs. No. 9 Fonda-Fultonville (13-5) at Clifton Common, 3 p.m.
No. 4 Schuylerville (10-3) vs. No. 13 Broadalbin-Perth (7-7) at Adirondack Sports Complex, 4 p.m.
No. 5 Saratoga Central Catholic (14-4) vs. No. 12 Hudson (9-9) at Clifton Common, 3 p.m.
No. 6 Taconic Hills (14-4) vs. No. 11 Cobleskill-Richmondville (8-8) at Clifton Common, 3 p.m.
No. 7 Greenville (8-6) vs. No. 10 Granville (8-6) at Clifton Common, 3 p.m.
Friday, May 30
Quarterfinals
No. 1 Hoosic Valley (14-0) vs. Chatham/Fonda winner at Vedder Park, 3 p.m.
Schuylerville/Broadalbin winner vs. Saratoga Central Catholic/Hudson winner, at Adirondack Sports Complex, 5 p.m.
No. 3 Cohoes (12-4) vs. Taconic Hills/Cobleskill winner at Vedder Park, 3 p.m.
No. 2 Ichabod Crane (17-0) vs. Greenville/Granville winner at Vedder Park, 3 p.m.
Tuesday, June 3
Semifinals
At Adirondack Sports Complex 4 p.m.
At Vedder Park, 3:30 p.m.
Friday, June 6
Class B championship final at Clifton Common, 5 p.m.

Class CC
Thursday, May 29
Quarterfinals
No. 4 Greenwich (8-6) vs. No. 5 Corinth (8-6) at Adirondack Sports Complex, 4 p.m.
No. 3 Schoharie (10-6) vs. No. 6 Hoosick Falls (7-7) at Vedder Park, 3:30 p.m.
No. 2 Lake George (13-1) vs. No. 7 Mayfield (9-9) at Adirondack Sports Complex, 4 p.m.
Monday, June 2
Semifinals
No. 1 Mechanicville (12-2) vs. Greenwich/Corinth winner at Clifton Common, 3 p.m.
Schoharie/Hoosick Falls winner vs. Lake George/Mayfield winner at Clifton Common, 3 p.m.
Wednesday, June 4
Class CC championship final at Clifton Common, 3 p.m.

Class C
Thursday, May 29
Quarterfinals
No. 4 Germantown (12-2) vs. No. 5 Fort Plain (12-6), at Vedder Park, 3:30 p.m.
No. 3 Waterford-Halfmoon (12-2) vs. No. 6 Warrensburg (10-4), at Vedder Park, 3:30 p.m.
No. 2 Canajoharie (14-3) vs. No. 7 Loudonville Christian (9-5), at Vedder Park, 3:30 p.m.
Monday, June 2
Semifinals
No. 1 Duanesburg (16-1) vs. Germantown/Ft. Plain winner at Clifton Common, 3 p.m.
Waterford/Warrensburg winner vs. Canajoharie/Loudonville at Clifton Common, 3 p.m.
Wednesday, June 4
Class C championship final at Clifton Common, 3 p.m.

Class D
Friday, May 30
Quarterfinals
No. 4 Fort Ann (9-6) vs. No. 5 Northville (5-13), at Adirondack Sports Complex, 5 p.m.
Tuesday, June 3
Semifinals
No. 1 Argyle (13-2) vs. Ft. Ann/Northville winner at Adirondack Sports Complex, 4 p.m.
No. 3 New Lebanon (9-5) vs. No. 2 Hartford (12-3) at Vedder Park, 3:30 p.m.
Friday, June 6
Class D championship final at Clifton Common, 5 p.m.

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11 new Saratoga Phillies ready for CWS


The Saratoga Phillies may have to wait before its 2008 New York Collegiate Baseball League roster is completely filled as 11 players and their respective collegiate teams have earned berths in the 2008 NCAA Division I College World Series.

Left-handed pitcher Sean Lucas, first baseman Tyler Biddix, outfielder David Coleman and right-handed pitcher Jake Cowan of Virginia could be making the trip to Fullerton, California as the No. 3 seed if they are part of the 25-man NCAA travel roster.

Locals will have a chance to see the Cavaliers compete beginning 7 p.m. Friday when they face No. 2 UCLA in the first contest of the regional broadcast on ESPNU.
The Fullerton Regional is only one of two regionals announced as being broadcast by ESPN.

The second contest on Friday will see No. 1 Cal State Fullerton take on No. 4 Rider.
The action continues Saturday when the first-round losers face-off at 7 p.m. and the winners meet at 11 p.m. The tournament uses a double-elimination format with action continuing on Sunday at 7 and 11 p.m. The “if necessary” contest is slated for 7 p.m.
The winner will advance to the Super Regional beginning June 6 or 7 for a best of three series.

Vanderbilt has advanced to the Tempe, Arizona Regional and left-handed pitcher Kellen St. Luce and outfielder Jordan Wormsley can be a part of the Commodores sixth consecutive tournament appearance.

No. 2 Vanderbilt will face No. 3 Oklahoma 5 p.m. Friday and host No. 1 Arizona State will face No. 4 Stony Brook at 10 p.m.

Elon University’s right-handed pitcher Jared Kernodle and infielder Greg Annarummo, playing for the Southern Conference Champions, advanced to the Clary, NC Regional as the No. 3 seed and will take on No. 2 UNC Wilmington 2 p.m. Friday. No. 1 North Carolina will face No. 4 Mount St. Mary at 6 p.m.

Oklahoma State’s right-handed pitcher Taylor McKinney gets to sleep in as the Cowboys host a regional and will face No. 4 Western Kentucky 8 p.m. Friday. In the opener, No. 2 Wichita State faces No. 3 TCU at 2 p.m.

Stanford right-hander Billy Vernon will have the same advantage as the No. 1 Cardinal will host No. 4 UC Davis 8 p.m. Friday. No. 2 Pepperdine faces No. 3 Arkansas at 4 p.m. This is the 28th appearance in the NCAA tournament for Stanford, currently ranked No. 16 in the nation.

The Big East Champions, Louisville and outfielder Nate Holland travel to Athens, Georgia as the No. 3 seeded team and will face No. 2 Georgia Tech 7 p.m. Friday. No. 1-seeded Georgia takes on No. 4 Lipscomb at 3 p.m.

The Division I Men’s College World Series double-elimination, eight-team finale will begin June 14 in Omaha, Nebraska.

The Saratoga Phillies is a collegiate wood bat baseball squad competing in the New York Collegiate Baseball League and its roster is comprised of college players who have not yet signed a professional contract.

The Phillies open their 2008 campaign on June 6 at Bennington and celebrate their home opener 7 p.m. June 10 versus Amsterdam at East Side Rec. Admission is always free.

For more information visit the Phillies on the web.

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Saturday, May 24, 2008

Saratoga County claims seven national rowing titles

Ballston Spa women's double wins gold
The Ballston Spa women’s senior double of Sarah Martin and Meredith Venerus were used to making history, becoming on of the first Scotties crew entries to ever advance to the Scholastic Rowing Association of America national championship regatta, but they decided another page added to the history books wouldn’t be a bad thing either.
The Ballston Spa girls captured the school’s first-ever rowing national championship Saturday in Oak Ridge, Tennessee.

The Scotties double rowed the 1,500-meter course on Melton Hill Lake in five minutes, 51.13 seconds beating out Parkersburg at 5:53.52 and Sacred Heart at 5:56.10.

The pair showed they were a force to be reckoned with, rowing to a first-place finish in Friday’s heat, rowing to a 10 second win over Sacred Heart to qualify for Saturday’s national final.

Shenendehowa lightweight double wins gold
They only had to row in one race at the SRAA national championship regatta, but Shenendehowa’s double of Abby Knight and Lauren Bourdreau made the most of it, capturing the women’s lightweight title with a 1,500-meter row in five minutes, 55 seconds.

The duo, competing in Oak Ridge, Tennessee on Melton Hill Lake, were only challenged by Holy Spirit, 1.26 seconds behind.

Baldwin finished in third at 6:09.09 followed by Sacred Heart at 6:12.41 and Saratoga’s double entry of Vanessa Dean and Casey Stein at 6:19.31.

Shen's Postulka wins singles national title
Shenendehowa senior Jackie Postulka said she likes rowing in a single because there is no one to blame but yourself.

On Saturday afternoon, there was no one else that deserved the credit more than herself as she claimed the Scholastic Rowing Association of America women’s single gold medal, rowing to her first national championship in a single.

The University of Buffalo-bound rower finished second at the New York State Championships, but proved she was the best, rowing to the title in 6:03.19 in front of the Upper Darby entry at 6:05.77 and the Academy of Holy Names entry third at 6:07.54. Postulka earned an SRAA gold medal last year in the women’s quad.

Saratoga women's eight third in the U.S.
The Saratoga women’s senior eight of coxswain Emily Krison, Alexandra Torres, Caitlin Schufelt, Madison Buemer, Rachael Conway, Shannon Craig, Alyssa O’Donnell and Columbia Herzlinger finished the rows of several of their seniors with a bronze medal, placing third Saturday afternoon in the SRAA national final.

The crew finished in 5:10.14 behind Holy Spirit at 5:09.51 and gold medal winner, Mount St. Joe’s in 5:06.55.

The women’s eight posted the fastest time in the three semifinals, advancing to the national final in 5:07.45. Familiar rival Mount St. Joseph was a close second at 5:08.11. Five of the six boats in the final were separated by less than two seconds.

Saratoga women's second eight earns bronze
After dominating the heats and semifinals the Saratoga Rowing Association women’s second eight comprised of coxswain Andrea Bambara, Courtney Krueger, Leanne Bryan, Alie Mihuta, Holly Dodge, Christina Dagle, Taylor Murray, Jamie Logan and Morgan Moore were finally bested Saturday at the Scholastic Rowing Association of America in Oak Ridge, Tennessee.

The boat mowed through the first two events, but New Trier had too much for them in the national final, capturing the gold medal in 5:03.79 followed by rival Mount St. Joseph’s in second at 5:04.86. The Saratoga boat rowed its way to a bronze medal in 5:08.17.

It was a determined Saratoga women’s second eight that didn’t leave any doubts in the semifinals. The crew rowed the fastest time in the event in 5:20.76, the second consecutive day of posting the top time advancing to the national final. New Trier and Thomas Jefferson were second and third, respectively, at 5:21.

Shen's junior double earns first bronze medal
Shenendehowa’s scullers continued to impress Saturday at the Scholastic Rowing Association of America national championship as Taryn Wilson and Rachel Boudreau earned a third-place finish in the women’s junior double final in Oak Ridge, Tennessee.

For the second time this year, the pair couldn’t find a way to beat New York State Champion, St. John the Baptist. At the national finals, the double finished five seconds behind winner St. John the Baptist and less than half a second off from silver medal winners, Shaker Heights.

The Shen scullers placed second in the state championships behind St. John the Baptist and were third last weekend at the Stotesbury Cup.

Reynolds takes bronze in men's single
Saratoga County had two finalists in the men’s single Saturday afternoon and Harvard-bound sculler, Elihu Reynolds, rowing for Queensbury earned a bronze medal with a time of 5:24.21 behind winning entries from Simcoe Composite at 5:20.06 and Pine View at 5:21.98.

He was joined in the final by Shenendehowa junior Ian Fisher who rowed his way to a sixth-place finish behind the Gilbraltar Carlson entry a tenth-of-a second behind at 5:28.88.

Shaker women's freshman eight earn silver medals
Shaker’s women’s freshman eight of coxswain Laura Hough, Amanda Marsh, Haley Bryk, Khalela Francis, Melissa Urquhart, Erin Czupil, Michelle Li, Jillian Keating and Martina Olstad rowed their way to a silver medal on Saturday in 5:28.14. New Trier took the gold at 5:26.44 and the Bison crew held off Radnor by less than half a second in third at 5:28.56.

Shaker advanced to the national final with a second-place finish to New Trier in the semfinal. Shaker’s 5:30.38 was fourth-fastest in the 12-boat semis. Radnor won the opposite semifinal in 5:27 followed by Mount St. Joes at 5:28 followed by Oak Ridge at 5:32.

Quads row in national finals
Saratoga Rowing Association had two entries in the women’s senior quad national final, but both failed to come home with a medal as Saratoga’s entry of Kathleen Ronayne, Katelin McGowan, Anna Card and Katelin Alexander rowed to a fourth-place finish and the Queensbury crew of Sarah Reynolds, Katie Hughes, Laura St. Andrews and Ariel Frank finished fifth.

Episcopal captured the national title in 5:08.96 followed by McLean at 5:14.73 and Ridgewood at 5:19.77. Saratoga rowed the 1,500-meter course in 5:39.71 followed by Queensbury at 5:48.87.

Saratoga men's junior four
The Saratoga men’s junior four of coxswain Emma Flynn, Jarod Backens, Wes Wander, Colin Polumbo, Chip Dooley advanced to the national final after a fast semifinal, but couldn’t overcome the stiff competition, finishing fifth overall.

Manhassett won the gold medal in 5:04.123 followed by Woodbridge at 5:08.0167 and Haverford at 5:08.2067. Saratoga was fifth at 5:15.12.

In the semifinal, the SRA entry finished third, behind Haverford and Manhasset, eight seconds back. Saratoga was the sixth-fastest boat in the semifinals.

Burnt Hills misses final by tenths
In a heartbreaking semifinal, the Burnt Hills men’s senior eight missed advancing to the national final by 2/100ths of a second. The BHRA entry of coxswain Matt Sammons, Ian Robison, James Flacke, Andrew Sayles, Aaron Heyde, Mike Olbrych, Zack Robbiano, Doug McErlean, Curtis Shorkey rowed the course in 4:34.24 edged out by a bow ball by New Trier at 4:34.04 and St. Augustine Prep in 4:33.82.

The Spartan’s time remained fifth-fastest out of the 18 entries, but advancement is solely based on finish place, not time.

In the men’s petite (secondary) final, Burnt Hills finished third in 4:39.35 behind Thomas Jefferson at 4:38.39 and petite winner, Gonzaga, at 4:35.51. Winter Park captured the national title with a time of 4:29.85.

Ballston boys make history in final
Ballston Spa’s Ryan Allen and Eric Newton made their mark on the national stage, earning a fifth-place finish in the men’s junior double, crossing the finish line in a videotaped tie with the Tappan Zee entry at 5:47.81.

Oak Ridge captured the national title in 5:25.80 followed Melbourne second at 5:26.96 and Riverhead third at 5:28.70.

Shen's lightweight double fifth
Shenendehowa’s Jared Benway and Chris Ehler finished fifth in the nation in the men’s lightweight double Saturday in their finals only contest. Ransom Everglade raced to the title in 5:17.03 followed by Malvern Prep in 5:21.77 and Great Bridge in 5:36.

Shen senior double sixth
Shenendehowa’s senior double of Peter Lyden and Murtaza Zavery advanced to the SRAA national final, rowing out their senior season with a sixth-place finish in 5:38.11. Southgate Anderson raced their way to the title in 5:07.51, holding off Haverford at 5:08.97.

Shen senior four fifth
The Shenendehowa women’s senior four of coxswain Victoria Allers, Jenn McKay, Kirsten Jesaitis, Lauren Beyer and Mandi Labbe had a disappointing semfinal, finishing in fifth-place in 6:02.08. St. Ignatius won the event in 5:45 followed by Woodbridge in 5:51 and McLean third at 5:52. The group advanced to the women’s senior four third final, capturing the event in 5:44.04.

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Ballston Spa's Martin and Venerus earn first-ever title

First rowing title in Scotties history


The Ballston Spa women’s senior double of Sarah Martin and Meredith Venerus were used to making history, becoming on of the first Scotties crew entries to ever advance to the Scholastic Rowing Association of America national championship regatta, but they decided another page added to the history books wouldn’t be a bad thing either.

The Ballston Spa girls captured the school’s first-ever rowing national championship Saturday in Oak Ridge, Tennessee.

The Scotties double, rowing out of the Saratoga Rowing Association boathouse, rowed the 1,500-meter course on Melton Hill Lake in five minutes, 51.13 seconds beating out Parkersburg at 5:53.52 and Sacred Heart at 5:56.10.

The pair showed they were a force to be reckoned with, rowing to a first-place finish in Friday’s heat, rowing to a 10 second win over Sacred Heart to qualify for Saturday’s national final.

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Queensbury's Reynolds third in men's single at SRAAs

Shen's Ian Fisher sixth

Saratoga County had two finalists in the Scholastic Rowing Association of America men’s national championship singles final Saturday afternoon and Harvard-bound sculler, Elihu Reynolds, rowing for Queensbury earned a bronze medal with a time of 5:24.21 behind winning entries from Simcoe Composite at 5:20.06 and Pine View at 5:21.98.

He was joined in the final by Shenendehowa junior Ian Fisher who rowed his way to a sixth-place finish behind the Gilbraltar Carlson entry a tenth-of-a second behind at 5:28.88.

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Shen's Postulka earns SRAA singles gold medal

Shenendehowa senior Jackie Postulka said she likes rowing in a single because there is no one to blame but yourself.

On Saturday afternoon, there was no one else that deserved the credit more than herself as she claimed the Scholastic Rowing Association of America women’s single gold medal, rowing to her first national championship in a single.

The University of Buffalo-bound rower finished second at the New York State Championships, but proved she was the best, rowing to the title in 6:03.19 in front of the Upper Darby entry at 6:05.77 and the Academy of Holy Names entry third at 6:07.54.
Postulka earned an SRAA gold medal last year in the women’s quad.

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SRA's 2nd women's eight third in the nation

After dominating the heats and semifinals the Saratoga Rowing Association women’s second eight comprised of coxswain Andrea Bambara, Courtney Krueger, Leanne Bryan, Alie Mihuta, Holly Dodge, Christina Dagle, Taylor Murray, Jamie Logan and Morgan Moore were finally bested Saturday at the Scholastic Rowing Association of America in Oak Ridge, Tennessee.

The boat mowed through the first two events, but New Trier had too much for them in the national final, capturing the gold medal in 5:03.79 followed by rival Mount St. Joseph’s in second at 5:04.86. The Saratoga boat rowed its way to a bronze medal in 5:08.17.

It was a determined Saratoga women’s second eight that didn’t leave any doubts in the semifinals. The crew rowed the fastest time in the event in 5:20.76, the second consecutive day of posting the top time advancing to the national final. New Trier and Thomas Jefferson were second and third, respectively, at 5:21.

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Shen's Wilson and Boudreau third in nation at SRAAs


Shenendehowa scullers continued to impress Saturday at the Scholastic Rowing Association of America national championship as Taryn Wilson and Rachel Boudreau earned a third-place finish in the women’s junior double final in Oak Ridge, Tennessee.

For the second time this year, the pair couldn’t find a way to beat New York State Champion, St. John the Baptist. At the national finals, the double finished five seconds behind winner St. John the Baptist and less than half a second off from silver medal winners, Shaker Heights.

The Shen scullers placed second in the state championships behind St. John the Baptist and were third last weekend at the Stotesbury Cup.

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Knight and Boudreau National Rowing Champions


They only had to row in one race at the Scholastic Rowing Association of America national championship regatta, but Shenendehowa’s double of Abby Knight and Lauren Bourdreau made the most of it, capturing the women’s lightweight title with a 1,500-meter row in five minutes, 55 seconds.

The duo, competing in Oak Ridge, Tennessee on Melton Hill Lake, were only challenged by Holy Spirit, 1.26 seconds behind.

Baldwin finished in third at 6:09.09 followed by Sacred Heart at 6:12.41 and Saratoga’s double entry of Vanessa Dean and Casey Stein at 6:19.31.

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Saratoga marching towards national rowing titles

OAK RIDGE, Tennessee – While the weather was warm in Oak Ridge, Tennessee for the first day of rowing at the Scholastic Rowing Association of America national championship regatta, the entries from Section II proved to be even hotter.

Fourteen different boats advanced to today’s national semifinals including defending New York State Champions the Saratoga Rowing Association’s women’s senior eight and the Burnt Hills Rowing Association men’s senior eight.

The Saratoga women’s senior eight of coxswain Emily Krison, Alexandra Torres, Caitlin Schufelt, Madison Buemer, Rachael Conway, Shannon Craig, Alyssa O’Donnell and Columbia Herzlinger earned a rest, advancing directly out of the heats and into the semifinals with a first-place row in their heat in 5:02.61. The time was the fastest overall out of the 27-boats entered.

The Burnt Hills senior men’s eight continue to impress, capturing its heat in 4:28.39. Coxswain Matt Sammons, Ian Robison, James Flacke, Andrew Sayles, Aaron Heyde, Mike Olbrych, Zack Robbiano, Doug McErlean, Curtis Shorkey rowed the fourth-fastest time out of the 28 entries, beat out by Winter Park in the first heat by tenths-of-a-second.

“The plan was to go out and win,” Burnt Hills varsity boys coach Mike Meier said. “We treated this like it was the final at states, all or nothing.’
“We were behind by a boat length and they kept their heads in it,” Meier said. “From 1,100-meters on they were able to get up on LaSalle and open it up by four seconds.”

The Burnt Hills women’s senior eight of coxswain Alanna Guay, Kate Halbig, Joanna Smith, Katie Fogg, Jackie Esperti, Victoria Catherine, Amanda Primett, Jesse Burdett and Kelsey Piel were forced to row twice in the Tennessee heat.
The crew finished fourth in its original heat contest at 5:18.04 five seconds behind heat winner, TC Williams.
Late in the afternoon the group was back on the water in the repechage final or secondary final, finishing in fifth-place in a fast race, just five seconds behind the event winner, Robinson.

“It’s warm,” Meier said. “It was cloudy for most of the morning and then at midday the sun came out and it started to bake everything and started to get more humid. I’m dreading any boat that has to go back out there this afternoon.”

The Saratoga men’s senior four of coxswain Reeves Courtne, Jon Sutton, Adam Jaouad, Peter Snyder and Sebastian Wheeler earned a second row on Friday, advancing out of the heat with a fourth-place time of 5:15.53. St. John’s Jesuit won the same heat in 5:00.76, the fastest time overall.
The group was challenged again in the afternoon, rowing to a fourth-place finish in the repechage in 5:20.98, failing to advance to today’s semifinals.

Saratoga County’s newest crew, Ballston Spa continued to impress as both doubles advanced to today’s national championship final.

Ballston Spa rowers, Ryan Allen and Eric Newton advanced to the men’s junior double final with a second-place finish in 5:12.50 behind first-place Haverford at 5:11.39.
The duo will be challenged by three boats from the opposite heat who all rowed 5:05 or faster.

Ballston Spa’s senior double of Sarah Martin and Meredith Venerus became the second Scotties boat ever to advance to an SRAA national final winning their heat in 5:41.60, the fastest time in the two heats overall. They will face-off against Parkersburg, the opposite heat winner in 5:43.16 and Strath Haven in 5:57.23.
Saratoga’s senior double failed to advance, finishing fourth in the second heat with a time of 6:24.15.

Friends of Shenendehowa Crew, Inc. senior Jackie Postulka, advanced to the national final to open Friday’s racing. She covered the 1,500-meter course in 5:59.30, but will face heavy competition from the second heat rowers where all three qualifiers rowed under 5:40.

Saratoga County could see two medal winners in the men’s senior single as Elihu Reynolds from Queensbury and Shen’s Ian Fisher both advanced to the national final.
Both were originally scheduled to row in opposite heats, but a scratch put them together and Reynolds winning time of 5:16.04 pushed Fisher to a close second at 5:22.45. The top two times in the remaining heat qualifiers came in from Simcoe Composite at 5:23 and Gibraltar Carlson at 5:24.

Shen’s junior double of Taryn Wilson and Rachel Boudreau won their heat and advanced to the final in 5:46.99, six seconds ahead of Shaker Heights. They’ll face heat two winner St. John the Baptist who cruised through at 5:37 and West Chester East in second at 5:45.

The Shenendehowa pair of Jared Benway and Chris Ehler advanced to the men’s lightweight double final with a second-place finish in their heat in 5:19.54 behind Ransom Everglades in 5:07.58. Malvern Prep captured the opposite heat in 5:02.33 followed by Great Bridges in 5:08.66.

Shenendehowa senior men’s double of Peter Lyden and Murtaza Zavery advanced to the national final with a third-place finish in their heat in 5:22.10. The national final will be fast as opposite heat winner, Southgate Anderson was the first crew to break the five-minute mark in 4:53.74. Haverford was second at 4:54.25 and Cincinnati Country Day School third at 5:20.81, all faster times.

Saratoga’s freshman eight of coxswain Rae Backens, Caroline Blackington, Mia Jeffreys, lizzy Fitzhenry, Chelsea Brown, Thora Olsen, Kat O’Donnell, Sierra Monroe and Isabel Price failed to advance out of the fourth heat. Their time of 5:44.11 was three seconds behind third-place qualifier Winter Park and would have been fast enough in the two previous heats to qualify.

Shaker’s freshman eight of coxswain Laura Hough, Amanda Marsh, Haley Bryk, Khalela Francis, Melissa Urquhart, Erin Czupil, Michelle Li, Jillian Keating and Martina Olstad won their heat in 5:34.89 advancing to the semifinals with the second-fastest time of the four winners.

Saratoga’s freshman eight of coxswain Brian Shepherd, Tom Schwartz, Luke O’Brien, Justin Fabian, Andrew Alexander, Colin Magoolaghan, Alex Wakeman, David Peters and Brendan Snyder failed to advance out of the heats, finishing fifth with a time of 5:14.32. Their time would not have advanced them out of the other three heats.

Saratoga’s junior four of coxswain Emma Flynn, Jarod Backens, Wes Wander, Colin Polumbo, Chip Dooley advanced to the semifinal with a second-place finish in 5:17.92 behind Woodbridge at 5:13.44. The SRA time was fifth-fastest in the heats overall.

The SRA’s women’s second eight of coxswain Andrea Bambara, Courtney Krueger, Leanne Bryan, Alie Mihuta, Holly Dodge, Christina Dagle, Taylor Murray, Jamie Logan and Morgan Moore weren’t going to be denied, advancing to the semifinals with the third-fastest time overall in their heats with a 5:15.18. They were second to Mount Saint Joseph in their heat at 5:12.79.

The Burnt Hills Rowing Association men’s second eight entry of coxswain Tim Szablewski, Bryan Murray, Quinn Leahy, Mike Young, Cameron Heyde, Aaron Pape, Tyler Bachand, Zeb Johnston and Jordan Adey failed to advance out of their heat, finishing fifth in 4:49.95. New York State champion, Chaminade won the heat with the fastest overall time of 4:38.07.

The Shenendehowa women’s senior four of coxswain Victoria Allers, Jenn McKay, Kirsten Jesaitis, Lauren Beyer and Mandi Labbe advanced to the national semifinals with a third-place finish in their heat in 5:58.48. Woodbridge took the same heat in 5:49.32 with Ocean City claiming the fastest time overall in 5:37.99.

The Shaker women’s senior eight of coxswain Bridget Hilton, Christie Chenot, Stephanie June, Shannon Rivenburg, Amanda Urquhart, Jess Niles, Anna Colquhoun, Patricia Shen and Madison Brannigan will row again today in the repechage, posting a fifth-place time of 5:20.66 in their heat.

The Saratoga men’s lightweight four of coxswain Tom Corona, Jeff Schumann, Ben Torpey, Matt Schwartz and Greg Lewis found themselves in a fast heat, finishing in fourth place in 5:22.15 with E.L. Crossley winning the heat in 5:11.67.
The SRA time was 10th overall out of the 20 boats entered, but not fast enough to advance to the national final.

“They’re really small even for a lightweight four,” Saratoga varsity boys coach Keith Alber said about the 150-pound maximum category. “They’re rowing in the 145-pound category in Canada. They row well, they’re just out-manned.”

The Saratoga women’s lightweight boat of coxswain Kiki Hines, Kristen Fay, Margot Albrezzi, Julianna Wakeman, Madison Townley, Emily LaFalce, Hannah Blackington, Chantal Jean and Kara Lucia failed to advance out of the heat, finishing in fifth-place at 5:47.32.

Rowing continues today at 9 a.m. with semifinals followed by finals set to begin at 1 p.m.

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Thursday, May 22, 2008

SRAAs 2008 locals line-up for row call

Twenty-six Saratoga County crews will take to Melton Hill Lake in Oak Ridge, Tennessee during the Scholastic Rowing Association of America National Championship Regatta.
All entries qualified through state and regional regatta events where teams all belong to the same high school.
Here’s a look at the two-day event’s schedule and the local competitors:

*Line-ups are based on New York State championships and info from RaceTrak.

9 a.m. Women’s senior single
Jackie Postulka, Friends of Shenendehowa Crew, Inc.

- The University of Buffalo-bound senior placed second at the New York State championships in 6:32.26. She is the second seed in her heat and a top three finish will advance her to Saturday’s final.

9:15 a.m. Men’s senior single
Ian Fisher, Friends of Shenendehowa Crew, Inc.

- The Shenendehowa junior was third in the state championship, second in the scholastic division in 5:56.08. He was fourth last weekend at the Stotesbury Cup in 6:01.14 against locals Elihu Reynolds and Shaker’s Austin Meyer.
He’s in an outside lane with stiff competition expected from entries from Simcoe Composite and Malvern Prep. He’ll have to row in a top two to advance to the finals.

9:20 a.m. Men’s senior single
Elihu Reynolds, Queensbury

- The Harvard-bound sculler will finally be challenged this year after winning the New York State title, again. He was second to future Crimson teammate Austin Meyer who won the Stotesbury Cup men’s single in 5:57.02. Reynolds was second at 5:59.61.
With only four rowers in his heat, Reynolds is expected to advance to the final.

9:25 a.m. Women’s junior double
Shenendehowa, Taryn Wilson and Rachel Boudreau

- The Shen scullers placed second in the state championships behind St. John the Baptist who will row in the other heat. The duo were third at last weekend’s Stotesbury Cup.
The top seed in the heat, the girls need a top three to advance to the finals.

9:35 a.m. Men’s junior double
Ballston Spa, Ryan Allen and Eric Newton

- A first for the Scotties as these two are newcomers to the SRAA event. They were second in the NYS championships in 5:53.56 and are in the outside lane. They will face a tough group with Haverford, S. Anderson and New Cannan. They need a top three to advance to the finals.
Riverhead took the NYS title and are also in the outside lane in the second heat, showing the talent both will face in their heat.

9:45 a.m. Men’s lightweight double
Shenendehowa, Jared Benway and Chris Ehler

- The Shen pair finished third in NYS and are a top seed in their six-boat heat. They will need a top three to advance to the final.

9:55 a.m. Men’s senior double
Shenendehowa, Peter Lyden and Murtaza Zavery

- The Shenendehowa duo were fourth overall in the New York State event, were the top scholastic boat. A good row in their four-boat heat gets them into Saturday’s final where they will be challenged.

10:05 a.m. Women’s senior double
Ballston Spa, Sarah Martin and Meredith Venerus

- Third in New York State, but as the second scholastic boat, advanced to the SRAAs.
This is a first for the Ballston Spa girls and are in lane two against four boats, can advance with a top three finish.

10:10 a.m. Women’s senior double
Saratoga, Maddie Tucci and Caroline Williams

The SRA pair were tops in the scholastic division in 6:28.80, but see a line-up change at the SRAAs. A top three puts them in the final.

10:15 a.m. Women’s freshman eight
Saratoga, coxswain Rae Backens, Caroline Blackington, Mia Jeffreys, lizzy Fitzhenry, Chelsea Brown, Thora Olsen, Kat O’Donnell, Sierra Monroe and Isabel Price.

- The SRA freshman captured the NYS title in 5:30.61, but had a disappointing weekend at Stotesbury. They have a six-boat heat, one of four and are one of the top two seeds. With a semifinal and final on Saturday, look for a top finish hoping to save some energy for the later races.

10:20 a.m. Women’s freshman eight
Shaker, coxswain Laura Hough, Amanda Marsh, Haley Bryk, Khalela Francis, Melissa Urquhart, Erin Czupil, Michelle Li, Jillian Keating and Martina Olstad.

- Second in the state, only three seconds behind Saratoga, they only have five competitors in their heat and have a solid chance to advance in to the semifinals.

10:45 a.m. Men’s freshman eight
Saratoga, coxswain Brian Shepherd, Tom Schwartz, Luke O’Brien, Justin Fabian, Andrew Alexander, Colin Magoolaghan, Alex Wakeman, David Peters and Brendan Snyder.

- Nine seconds back at New York States for a third-place finish, Saratoga dodged second place Chaminade who isn’t in the event and winner Canisius is in a different heat. With only five boats in the heat the freshman are expected to advance to the semifinals and then battle to get into the final.

11:20 a.m. Men’s junior four
Saratoga, coxswain Emma Flynn, Jarod Backens, Wes Wander, Colin Polumbo, Chip Dooley.

- Second in NY State and are expected to advance in the four-boat heat to the semifinals. Then they’ll meet NY State champion, Manhasset along with a host of stiff competition.

12:30 p.m. Women’s second eight
Saratoga, coxswain Andrea Bambara, Courtney Krueger, Leanne Bryan, Alie Mihuta, Holly Dodge, Christina Dagle, Taylor Murray, Jamie Logan and Morgan Moore.

- Tops in NY State this boat is hoping to earn another salute from their coxswain with a national title.
Rowing out of lane one in a six-boat race they haven’t been given a lot of respect for a state champion, look for them to send a message early.

12:45 p.m. Men’s second eight
Burnt Hills, coxswain Tim Szablewski, Bryan Murray, Quinn Leahy, Mike Young, Cameron Heyde, Aaron Pape, Tyler Bachand, Zeb Johnston and Jordan Adey.

- Second in NY State behind Chaminade by 12 seconds, the two will meet again in the first heat. Both will look to advance to the semifinal out of the five-boat heat.

1 p.m. Women’s senior four
Shenendehowa, coxswain Victoria Allers, Jenn McKay, Kirsten Jesaitis, Lauren Beyer and Mandi Labbe.

- Fourth overall in NY state, third scholastic were 16 seconds behind the winner, Buffalo Seminary. With only four boats in the heat, the key is not finishing last and being eliminated. A repechage will be held later in the day to determine semis and finals.

1:50 p.m. Men’s senior four
Saratoga, coxswain Reeves Courtne, Jon Sutton, Adam Jaouad, Peter Snyder and Sebastian Wheeler.

The non-finishers in the NY State championships petitioned their way into the SRAAs and will have only once chance to prove themselves. Last place in their heat out of lane one will end their weekend, if successful they advance to Friday’s repechage looking to race Saturday in semi and finals.

2 p.m. Women’s senior eight
Shaker, coxswain Bridget Hilton, Christie Chenot, Stephanie June, Shannon Rivenburg, Amanda Urquhart, Jess Niles, Anna Colquhoun, Patricia Shen and Madison Brannigan.

- Fifth overall in NY State, but only 17 seconds behind the winner. In a six-boat heat, the Shaker entry will need to avoid a last-place finish and be eliminated. Top boats advance to semifinals, the rest to the repechage.

2:05 p.m. Women’s senior eight
Saratoga, coxswain Emily Krison, Alexandra Torres, Caitlin Schufelt, Madison Buemer, Rachael Conway, Shannon Craig, Alyssa O’Donnell and Columbia Herzlinger.

- Tops in NY State, they ran away with the state title and this boat full of seniors are determined to go out with a national title. Rowing out of lane six, they aren’t a high seed, but a first-place finish gets them the rest of the day off and into Saturday’s semifinals.

2:15 p.m. Women’s senior eight
Burnt Hills, coxswain Alanna Guay, Kate Halbig, Joanna Smith, Katie Fogg, Jackie Esperti, Victoria Catherine, Amanda Primett, Jesse Burdett and Kelsey Piel.

- They finished third overall, but were second in the scholastic ranks, 10 seconds behind winner Saratoga. Burnt Hills has five boats in its heat and have to finish in the top four to advance. Rowing out of lane six, they will have to hold off TC Williams, O’Connell, Absegami and Plant High to continue.

2:55 p.m. Men’s senior eight
Burnt Hills, coxswain Matt Sammons, Ian Robison, James Flacke, Andrew Sayles, Aaron Heyde, Mike Olbrych, Zack Robbiano, Doug McErlean, Curtis Shorkey.

- The New York State champions remained on top, winning again last weekend at the Syracuse Jr. Chargers Invitational last weekend. They are in a six-boat heat wit the winner advancing to the semifinals and last place eliminated. Hard to handicap with Fairport (3rd) and Shaker (4th) not traveling, the competition will be from out of state.

3:40 p.m. Men’s lightweight four
Saratoga, coxswain Tom Corona, Jeff Schumann, Ben Torpey, Matt Schwartz and Greg Lewis.

- Third-place in NY State, but 12 seconds off the pace, the Saratoga lightweights have something to prove to themselves and the rest of the state. They could see Canisius and McQuaid Jesuit in the semifinals.

3:55 p.m. Women’s lightweight eight
Saratoga, coxswain Kiki Hines, Kristen Fay, Margot Albrezzi, Julianna Wakeman, Madison Townley, Emily LaFalce, Hannah Blackington, Chantal Jean and Kara Lucia.

- Fourth overall and third in the scholastic lightweights, Saratoga faces second in NY State, Nardin in their five-boat heat.

Saturday, 1 p.m.
Women’s lightweight double final
Shenendehowa, Libby Knight and Lauren Boudreau

- Tops in New York State, with authority, this duo also captured the Stotesbury Cup last weekend.
In a final-only contest, look for them to take off again and not look back.

Saturday, 1 p.m.
Women’s lightweight double final
Saratoga, Vanessa Dean and Casey Stein

-Second in New York State, but 15 seconds behind the Shenendehowa pair, they also face competition from Holy Spirit and Sacred Heart.

Saturday, 2:50 p.m.
Women’s senior quad final
Saratoga, Kathleen Ronayne, Katelin McGowan, Anna Card and Katelin Alexander

- The top scholastic boat at the NY State event, four seconds behind Mohawk Homeschool, it’s one and done for this foursome and has a good chance to medal in the six-boat final.

Saturday, 2:50 p.m.
Women’s senior quad final
Queensbury, Sarah Reynolds, Katie Hughes, Laura St. Andrews and Ariel Frank

-Third overall, this could have been settled on Fish Creek as the only other competition is McClean, Episcopal, Forest Park, Ridgewood along with friends in Saratoga. Saratoga County could earn two medals in one event.

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I miss my rowers...damn corporate rules!

I usually don't like to complain on my blog, well at least I try to reserve it for horrific carbon footprints by a TV head or something more worldly, but this time it's all about me.

Well, me and my rowers.

Beginning on Friday the Scholastic Rowing Association of America will host its national championship regatta in Oak Ridge, Tenn. and I won't be there.

I've been to two SRAA regattas on the Cooper River in New Jersey and been at the center when the event was hosted on Fish Creek in Saratoga.

Oak Ridge, Tenn. is located 14 hours southwest of Saratoga Springs and needless to say I'm here in the Ballston Spa Bunker wishing I was looking at my first Stuckey's ever.

I'm not a high-maintenance reporter. I've ridden 12 hours in a bus with the crew kids on a seat next to the bathroom and even gave a phone interview inside the bathroom so I could hear the conversation. I've hitched a ride in the truck pulling the shells and slept on the floor of a coach's room, all they had to do is put up with my snoring.

Some may question the "ethical" standpoint of having transportation provided by the entity that you're covering, but let's face it, times are tough and I wanted to cover the event.

What makes it worse for me is that the rowing community wanted me to be there just as bad.

For the Tennessee trip I had not one, but several offers to get me to Tennessee, put me up and let me do my own thing.

No dice.

You see, because of the fact that I would never fly to Tennessee (more my fear than anything else) due to the cost, it would be a land trip.

Well 28 hours in travel at our newspaper out of an only allowed 37.50 workweek wouldn't give me a lot of time to write about the event, or do anything else for our publications.

I had several scenarios that would have allowed me to go, mainly not telling anyone that I was going. It seemed pretty simple, but the heavy hand of our HR department, always assuming that a land shark may take me on land, an oar may become lodged in my butt wouldn't allow it. The fact is it was never even proposed, why even pick a fight you are going to lose.

It all came down to cash and not a ton of it.

The paper would demand that I get paid for my travel and work all within the same work week. (God forbid we sacrifice some time or paperwork to get a story). And our office hasn't seen allowable overtime since gas was below $2 a gallon and we were getting .24 cents a mile for travel.

We have more than 100 rowers from Saratoga County in Oakridge, Tennessee and not one reporter.

I bet you if we had five baseball teams from Saratoga County (at any age level, from Wilton Little League to the high school level) we probably couldn't throw enough resources at it. Because, hey, everyone loves baseball. They can understand it, they played it and the public would demand it.

When the decision came down, I took the high road and turned away offers from coaches, association presidents and several parents who were willing to call the office and raise some hell on my behalf.

It worked for horse racing, but since I'm one of the few who clearly supports crew compared to the easy argument on the behalf of horse racing, but I decided to stay clear.

Dumb decision on my part.

I had a ride, I was willing to eat the pay, all to get the story.

Nope. Nada. Sorry with a smile. That's too bad, big guy. NFW.
Rowing gets underway Friday morning and finishes up on Saturday, all in Oak Ridge, Tennessee.

Me, my laptop, my camera, and any hopes of getting another "Award-Winning Photo" (shameless plug for me and jab at the newspaper) will be here in the Ballston Spa Bunker.

But my heart will be with the kids, coaches and parents in Oak Ridge, Tennessee.

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Tuesday, May 20, 2008

CVRA vs. The World retuns June 27


MALTA —- Albany-Saratoga Speedway Race Director Bruce Richards was all smiles when he announced that the ever-popular CVRA vs. The World event would make a triumphant return to the 3/8ths-of-a-mile oval June 27 with a new sponsor.

The June 27 event is begin billed as “General Motors presents CVRA vs. The World”, the 100-lap big block/small block challenge that will pay $8,000 to the winner.

The event was first run at Albany-Saratoga Speedway in 2003, when Frank Cozze hauled in and took home the top prize. Brett Hearn made his way to victory lane in the 2004 edition of the big race, but that was the last time that CVRA vs. The World was held at the Malta track.

This year, in conjunction with local Chevrolet dealers in the upstate New York area, Richards is bringing back the race this season, with an increased purse. The final purse structure is still being worked on, but it will be designed to help all competitors defray their cost of racing in this major event.

“General Motors presents CVRA vs. The World” will be for conventional-bodied modifieds. No sail panels will be allowed, and any track tire can be utilized.

“We had thought about running this race on Thursday, July 3, but Ransomville has a big race that night, and I have a good relationship with the Friesens and I didn't want to run against them,” Richards said. “So we're sticking with the June 27 date.”

Fans will also benefit from the sponsorship of General Motors, as discount coupons, good for $3 off the general admission charge, will be available at participating dealers during the weeks leading up to CVRA vs. the World. Fans will also be able to register for a trip to the General Motors VIP tent, which will be set up behind the main grandstand on race night.

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Sunday, May 11, 2008

Rowing States - Titles and entries on the line

There is more on the line today at Fish Creek than just earning a potential state medal and having the privilege of purchasing a state championship T-shirt.

Entries to the Scholastic Rowing Association of America National Championship Regatta are also on the line.

Most of the scholastic finishers in the eights and fours will earn entry from the final (five advance from NY) but the field tightens up in the smaller boats with only the winners of the quad, junior quad, junior double and lightweight doubles receiving a bid.

The top two varsity doubles, singles, lightweight eights and fours also receive a bid.

Those boats that are outside the automatic parameters may petition for entry into the SRAAs, but a disastrous weekend of timing at the New Jersey State Championships may cause many of the at-large bids to be funneled to the Garden State boats that had good rows but were not recorded correctly.

The weather has been surprisingly friendly all weekend for the state championships with flat weather, clear skies and everything running on time.

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Saturday, May 10, 2008

NYS Rowing Championships on...time to row!

It's an annual event on the shore of Fish Creek and despite beautiful weather, little wind, no rain and flat water (all rare in the sport of crew) the New York State Scholastic Rowing Championships are underway this morning.

The event couldn't ask for better weather, hopefully leading to fast times and excitment for the masses on the Route 9P Bridge and the shoreline.

The morning started with heat races for the smaller boats with heats being contested throughout the afternoon, setting up repechages (secondary heats) and semifinals on Sunday.

I'm in the exclusive timing tent with the veteran staff of volunteers who make the event what it is, most will graduating with their rowers after this weekend and they are busy training the next generation of volunteers.

Dr. Reda (my wife) will once again be typing in race results for the 60+ races today, making sure I drink enough water, eat and put on my sunscreen each hour.

Who says good help is hard to find. You just have to marry it!

I'm working on a few stories today, new trophies, the retirees as well as about two very special rowers.

Tonight we'll look at how Sunday is set up and if there were any surprises coming out of today's early contests.

Until then.."Row Hard and Live Long"

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Friday, May 02, 2008

Rain takes out tonight's racing card

Rain now becomes a four-letter word for the next four months, sidelining a variety of sporting events and car racing is no different.

The rain is expected to move in throughout the afternoon, canceling tonight's race card at the Albany-Saratoga Speedway.

Friday's GlenRidge Motorsports Park racing card is still on as of noon.

The Section II crew championships will go on as scheduled on the Mohawk River in Niskayuna. Rain won't stop these rowers, but a thunderstorm will bring everything to a halt.

Now my plan is crew this afternoon and some web work after that with crew again on Saturday.

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Lauer turns green to black this week

I know this is normally, 99.99% a sports information blog, but since I've taken some time off from blogging, writing and making videos, (under direct orders from several of my bosses), I'm rested and fired up.

With a new month and another goal to be an "insane blogger", my A.M. television viewing with my wife just put me over the edge.

Here is the e-mail I sent to The Today Show regarding its own hypocrisy regarding its "NBC goes Green week" promotions followed up by the inane "Where in the world is Matt Lauer?" segments.

Here's my e-mail that won't see the light of day, but will end up in trash can of some intern at NBC.

Apparently for NBC, "Green Week" meant bags of cash from advertisers as millions of viewers tuned in to see at what far away location Matt Lauer is this week for "Where in the World is Matt?".

Jump off a week of being environmentally and politically correct and then send Lauer 32,000 miles in the next five days. What kind of carbon footprint do you think the face of NBC just left on the planet Earth.

What is the size of the footprint left by the NBC advance staff who went there ahead of Lauer, all during "Green Week"?

Let's have MSNBC do an expose on the carbon footprint left by Lauer during the past decade of "Where in the world?"

With the internet, Discovery Channel, National Geographic etc, does NBC really need an unshaven talking head flying around the world for 10 minutes worth of fill?

My suggestion, next year, why not make it "Where in the United States is Matt Lauer in his Prius?"


Courtesy of auto-repy technology, here is the top of the e-mail I got back minutes after I sent in my e-mail, along with a long list of who to e-mail for story ideas, how to get my 100 grandmother's photo on with Willard Scott..

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